Serato DJ 1.8: Hardware Remapping, Key Detection + Shifting

There’s a new a major update coming out for Serato DJ that gives the entire platform a facelift. Until now, if a DJ wanted to remap their controller it was next to impossible without some creative engineering skills. In Serato DJ 1.8, there’s now user MIDI remapping tools, as well as key detection, and an update to Pitch ‘n Time DJing allowing key shifting/sync.

Pitch ‘n Time DJing with Harmonic Mixing


Serato has added their own key-detection engine (yes, we’ll be testing its accuracy soon). Now, DJs can import their tracks directly into Serato DJ to get all the necessary information needed for the perfect mix. The key display is color-coded (similar to other software) and a DJ can choose how the software displays the key of track – Camelot, Open Key, Musical Key notation. The algorithm used for the key detection was developed in-house by Serato who is also offering Serato Key, an external key detection tool for free download.

The key detection update for Pitch n’ Time (a paid add-on download to the software – free if you already have the Pitch n’ Time add-on) allows the DJ to key shift, match, and sync tracks. A visual representation of compatible track keys based on the current deck can be accessed for harmonic mixing. The key algorithm was created and used by post-production professionals, audio engineers, and producers to ensure accurate key detection within Serato DJ. A track can also be speed up or slowed down to extreme tempo values without changing the key of the track. The Pitch n’ Time update in conjunction with the added key detection tool gives DJs more creative freedom over their tracks and it will be interesting to see how the software keeps up with DJs’ crates.

Serato DJ Hardware Remapping (FINALLY!)

Hardware Remapping

One of the most-requested missing features from Serato DJ is the ability to remap hardware. It is well known that non-affiliated controllers can’t be used or mapped in the software, but it seemed ridiculous that a Serato controller couldn’t be remapped to better fit personal preferences.

Serato has answered the calls by opening up supported hardware for user remapping. Advanced users can now remap parts of their controllers for better access to the many features that are available in Serato DJ. (Note: Serato Accessories do not support remapping at this time.) Serato does warn DJs however that there are some limitations for specific hardware and that information on remapping specific controllers will be included in updated controller quick start guides after the release of Serato DJ 1.8.

Serato DJ 1.8 offers some promising features for DJs who depend on the software along with a number of important performance and stability updates. No official word on compatibility with Mac OS X El Capitan but we are assuming Serato will soon have it under control – until then, don’t update your OS.

The new version of Serato DJ will be available end of October for download here – a free update for all DJs with supported hardware or licenses. All previous Serato DJ trials will be reset on release, giving all users another 14 day trial period to test out these new features.

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